Planning Made Easy - Mind Mapping
Have you ever struggled to come up with a step-by-step action plan? Or maybe you would like to explore a career path but you’re not sure how to do it?
The first thing that I heard when discussing goals was that I needed to use the SMART approach. While it helped me for sure in tailoring my objectives to be realistic, it didn’t help me to go in-depth.
SMART stands for specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound. It works to create good milestones and to set a healthy timeline.
I’m more of a creative person and the SMART structure, while great, is not the first thing I need to come up with a good plan. I need something more visual.
I was working with a young man struggling in his job, he wasn’t happy but he couldn’t identify the best course of action to pivot his career. He had tried SMART and many other goal setting approaches (GROW, development plans, etc.) and honestly he was getting frustrated because he was eager to act but he was lacking direction, he didn’t know which type of job would be good for him and he didn’t want to throw away a stable position for something that potentially wouldn’t even be better. If you have been in his same situation, I am sure you can empathise!
That’s when I decided to use mind mapping to help him plan his next steps. Usually mind mapping is recommended for brainstorming activities like coming up with a new brand name or planning an editorial calendar, however it’s also extremely effective for the creatives among us that want to colour outside the lines.
In the specific case I mentioned, we started from jotting down all the likes and dislikes of the current role and then looking at the likes we brainstormed which situations could create more of the positives, such as he liked individual workload and also he preferred a quiet environment. Easy to spot that working in a call centre or a marketplace wouldn’t be ideal for him.
We analysed which tasks, among the current ones, were his favourite and as IT emerged as a clear winner he started getting enthusiastic and excited. He started to imagine a job in IT in a silent environment where he could be an individual contributor while still being in touch with colleagues and potentially a team.
At this point, he was able to quickly brainstorm multiple ways to get closer to that ideal job. He immediately mapped out a few entry roles he could look at while also reviewing a few courses he could take to upskill.
Mind Mapping helps people to look at goals as POSSIBILITIES, there is no right or wrong, black or white. There are many options and digging deeper you can also find the best actions to take to get closer to those goals.
You can use pen and paper, you can use an online tool (there are several free tools available) and you can also use the printables I’m including here below:
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Are you still struggling to come up with a course of action that excites you and fills you with enthusiasm? You may benefit from one of my ACCELERATOR programmes! In a short timeframe, you’ll identify what you want to do, how your values align with your chosen goal and what you need to do to make it happen! Book a chat today if you are ready to create your dream life!